ALTA, Iowa — Round one of the IMCA World Products Stock Car Shootout went to a driver who’s already been there and done that.
Jeff Anderson led past midway of the Monday night special for IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars at Buena Vista Raceway. After falling out of the front spot, he stayed close enough to capitalize when Brian Blessington got sideways and take the $1,000 checkers.
The winner of the inaugural Shootout feature in 1996, as well as the 1998 event, Anderson was chased across the stripe by Damon Murty, defending series champion Donavon Smith, David Smith and Blessington.
Anderson led the first 13 of 25 circuits before Murty drove by. A caution followed on the next lap and Anderson got the point back when Murty slid high on the restart.
Blessington, meanwhile, had qualified from a “B” feature and flew from 17th starting into the top five by lap nine; he was in second on lap 15 and needed just three more trips around the track to pass Anderson for the point.
What proved to be the final caution came with three laps left and Blessington restarted ahead of David Smith, Anderson, Donavon Smith and Murty.
Disaster struck as the leader was coming to take the white flag. Blessington spun but was able to get straightened out and avoid bringing out the yellow. He managed to salvage fifth place, behind the opportunistic Anderson, Murty and the Smiths.
Combined, the top five finishers own more than 700 IMCA career feature wins in the class. Murty won the Shootout title in 2006 and 2010 and Blessington reigned in 2008.
Other feature winners during Monday’s Kyle Suter Memorial program at Alta included Chris Abel¬son in the IMCA Modifieds, Devin Smith in the IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stocks, Austin Lucas in the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods and Megan Lappegard in the Mach-1 Sport Compacts.